Asked about his ailing outfielder after the game, Washington's skipper Davey Johnson told reporters that Werth had done some work throughout the evening and declared himself available. "He got a lot of treatment during the game," Johnson said, "and then he was swinging down in the cage. He said he was fine for a pinch hit. I was going to have to run for him, but other than that."
"So you don't know if he'll be available for tomorrow?" a reporter asked.
"I don't know about tomorrow," the manager said.
Werth is back in the lineup, but that isn't the most interesting development heading into the second game of three with the NL East's first-place Braves. When the Nationals announced tonight's lineup, Johnson had Ryan Zimmerman batting second for just the third time in the 28-year-old, nine-year veteran's MLB career. Zim's hit third, fourth and sixth this season. The Nats' '05 1st Round pick has one plate appearance hitting second in 2009 and one in 2011, but this is reportedly his first start in the two-hole. Werth takes over the three-hole tonight:
#Nationals lineup vs. ATL: Harper 7, Zimmerman 5, Werth 9, LaRoche 3, Desmond 6, Ramos 2, Span 8, Rendon 4, Gonzalez 1— Nationals PR (@NationalsPR) August 6, 2013
Zimmerman has a .281/.326/.372 line since July 1st and a .275/.347/.436 line on the season with 19 doubles and 12 HRs in 98 games and 412 plate appearances. Wilson Ramos, who was the Nats' cleanup hitter last night, drops down to sixth, Deanrd Span's seventh, Anthony Rendon eighth, it's like Davey Johnson's just throwing things at the wall to see what sticks or something...
Davey on today's lineup: "I was throwing things against the wall and this one stuck."— Mark Zuckerman (@ZuckermanCSN) August 6, 2013
Davey was asked about today's lineup: "I was just throwing things up against the wall. That one stuck."— Amanda Comak (@acomak) August 6, 2013
Davey on today's lineup, including Ryan Zimmerman hitting second: "I was throwing things up against the wall. That one stuck."— James Wagner (@JamesWagnerWP) August 6, 2013
Another note from the manager's pregame press conference? Tanner Roark, who was called up today, could potentially fill in for Taylor Jordan when Jordan reaches his innings limit in the first full-year back following Tommy John surgery:
Davey says Roark is an innings guy could be Choice for 5th starter later when T. Jordan shut down; Spin Williams really liked him— Byron Kerr (@masnKerr) August 6, 2013
Game Time 7:05 pm EDT tonight in D.C. Gio Gonzalez vs Julio Teheran.